What a delightful, girlie, French week we just had!!

Amy and I headed out on a Saturday morning, and had pretty good luck getting to Paris.  Glenda met us at baggage claim where we all had tears and endless smiles!


She’s been in the city since August, so she’s an expert in the Metro, and did a fabulous job with the language.  We did a lot of sightseeing the first day, even tho we were a bit jetlagged.  We went to Notre Dame, Champs Elysses, Arc du Triomphe, and the Eiffel Tower.

see Quasimodo?
right in the middle of Champs Ellysses
at the bridge near the Eiffel
at the base of the Tower

We were so glad to go to bed that night, and started the next day by going to Glenda’s campus with her.  It is located near an interesting museum/shopping area that Amy and I cruised while she was in class.

Pompidou Museum of Modern Art
Street vendor selling crepes - Nutella is at EVERY stand
One of an huge volume of bakery pictures

We ate this same snack lunch every day – cheese, nuts, olives, fruit, bread.  Restaurants are so expensive and really we preferred to eat like this.

We eat this way at home too!

Then it was off to the Louvre – Glenda’s right about how to see it – you just have to do a section at a time.  She’s been about 8 times with her class, and has done a different section each time.  Amy and I did the typical tourist thing cuz our time was compressed, and Glenda had to go to class so we were on our own.

here she is
At the interior inverted glass pyramid
twinning it up
our hostel room with view of....the street

The next day was our trip to the Musee D’Orsay – Glenda’s favorite in Paris.  It was structurally beautiful; it’s a museum of impressionism, and included some pretty spectacular pieces.

Van Gogh's self-portrait

Glenda talked so much about this Van Gogh, and then when we saw it, we understood.  The color and pattern really are remarkable.  There were sculptures and some contemporary pieces we enjoyed seeing, as well as Gauguin and Monet.  The problem with a collection like that is that you become overstimulated/saturated so quickly, so after a couple of hours of following our resident docent, we stopped for a French lunch of quiche, sandwiches, and pastry.

lunch on the street
...with dessert

After that respite, we cruised an upscale section of Paris with shops and stores – then we went into a wine-tasting store Glenda has visited in her oenology class, and of course we had to have a tasting!  We bought a bottle of white, and a cheese tray for supper.  It was delicious, with one tiny exception.  These cheese samplers are assembled at the discretion of the cheese-sampler-assembler in the kitchen, I suppose, and our plate included a cheese the likes of which I have never experienced.

the offending selection is the baked triangle at the bottom of the plate

I love stinky cheese – the stinkier-feet-smelling, the better, as far as I’m concerned.  I love Roqufort, blue cheese, even limberger.  This cheese was not just aromatic.  It was not just pungent.  This cheese smelled like nothing other than…well, let’s just say that we now refer to it as Ass Cheese .  It’s called Reblochment Fermier; we googled it when we got back to the dorm and cracked up at the colorful descriptions of other consumers.

our wine and cheese experience

So we began the next day.  Glenda had class, so Amy and I headed out to Versailles, about a half-hour’s train ride from Paris.  The weather was awful – cold, wet, windy – but it was our one chance to go, and there’s that Jordan family motto thing, so off we went.  It was as dramatically spectacular as we knew it would be, but seeing it in person has a huge impact.

the Chapel at VersaillesThe Hall of Mirrorssome of the formal gardens

On our last full day, Glenda’s wine class went to a wine-tasting expo in Paris.  It was composed of independent wine producers, and many residents purchase their annual supply of wine here.  There were probably 300+ vendors, all offering tastings and sales.  Best 6 Euro we spent on the whole trip.  There were food vendors too, so you didn’t get too buzzed, and we spent the better part of the day here.

having a great time at the Expo!

That afternoon when we returned to the dorm, we created the French version of Thanksgiving, and we had a blast doing it (that may have had something to do with the fact that we were marinating in Expo-juice!)  A couple other American students joined us for our feast, and now Glenda is enjoying the leftovers.

Traditional feast for us: sweet potato casserole, green beans, dressing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, pecan and pumpkin pies

All in all, it was a phenomenal trip, and we hated to see it end.  Glenda put us on the train to the airport the following day, we had great seats on the plane, and about 13 hours later, via Atlanta, we were home!

Daughter Amy has to fly back to California for another 2 weeks of classes, then a week of finals, then the fam regroups in Colorado for Christmas.  Oh, and in the meantime, I’ll attempt to return to training/nutrition for my race!
Thanks for reading!